‘Away down South in Dixie’
I’ve just returned from my trip to the South – having visited the majority of the North-East, some of the Midwest, South West and California, I knew that regional differences the United States was a real thing. I knew, of course that the South very much had its own culture but didn’t know what to expect.
There was no banjo playing that tune from Deliverance, nor did I witness any racism. Cattle shows, a lot of tractor stores, very high number of highway adverts for fireworks, an equal amount for gun and knife shows, but the number one I thing that will take back – the food.
Apparently, the whole world has been misusing the word barbecue! A barbecue is simply not grilling outdoors but slow roasting, in a pit. I quickly announced that we had some fantastic barbecue on our second day here from one of the best barbecue from a Texan who use to do the cook-outs at the White House… “Barbecue in Texas is also not quite barbecue”.
My first full-day in Clemson, South Carolina, I was immediately indoctrinated into the world of ‘proper barbecue’ at the Smokin’ Pig (http://thesmokinpigsc.com/). It did not disappoint!
For less than $7 you get some of the best food I’ve tasted in my life, I’m salivating just thinking about it.
A little further South in South Carolina’s state capital, Columbia, there’s another great restaurant that encapsulates both the areas great food but also perhaps the only thing that surpasses it, the people there.
Upon stepping off a 10 hour bus journey, which started at 6am in DC, I was made to feel at home very quickly at Yesterday’s! (http://www.yesterdayssc.com/) and the food is as good as welcome! Reasonable priced, deliciously tasting and the hospitality better than anywhere. It really does give a great impression for a first time visitor life myself… they also love College football (obviously).
I’d definitely recommend it to anyone who can stomach 10 hours on a bus, which truth be told was a fairly pleasant experience. Aside from having to wake up at 4am (I can’t think of a genuine reason why someone would wake up at such a time, except for travel), everything was great!
There’s wifi, plenty of personal space, great views and it’s an excellent opportunity to do some school work. The bus also stops off for quick changes in Virginia, at a few different places in North Carolina and South Carolina, giving you the chance to very quickly sample a little bit of each state. I am going to enquire about getting my driving license here, but truth be told, Megabus is extremely efficient and its network extensive! It’s also owned by Brian Souter, fellow Scot and major political donator to my former political party back home.
I also found another little bit of home in the South!
Stornoway is a small rural community on an island, which is very religious… everything closes on Sunday, so Pendleton is actually pretty progressive in comparison.